BY: REV. FR. ORLY MENDOZA: Jesus Christ compared Himself to a shepherd. In fact, He claimed to be “The Good Shepherd” and He is. During the time of Jesus, a shepherd, as mentioned by Jesus Christ, knew his sheep and his sheep knew him. They knew his voice and he knew each of them. He watched for them the whole day and night and risked his life to save them. The shepherd would do everything for his sheep and his sheep would follow him. In the same way, Jesus Christ claims: “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me” (Jn 10:27).
As Christians, we are the sheep of Jesus Christ. He knows each of us not only by name but also by our very being. He knows what we think, what we feel, what we plan, what we desire, what we do in secret, what we say, and what we believe. We cannot make any secret from Jesus because He is God. But Jesus does not only know us; He cares for us because He loves us. How much does He love us? He sacrificed His life on the cross for each of us. And He is constantly sacrificing Himself every time a Holy Mass is celebrated in the whole world. He did everything for us and He is willing to do all for the love of us.
The question is: “Do we hear Jesus’ voice?” If Jesus is our shepherd, then we must hear His voice. To hear Jesus’ voice means to listen to Him. The problem these days is that there are a lot of distractions because of the modern style of living. These distractions of modern life aside from work, house chores, memberships to organizations, and schools activities, are the following: Telenovela, movies, facebook, messenger, texts, videoke, hangouts, and many more. Because of these, we have no time to pray, no time to read the Bible, no time to attend the Sunday Mass, and no time to discern the Will of God. Without prayer, we cannot listen to God. In fact, the highest form of personal prayer is not talking to God but listening to Him. Without listening to Jesus, there is no real love for Him. And listening in the real sense of the word is not only hearing and discerning but also accepting the message of God.
Another question is: “Do we follow Jesus?” The most important thing of our Christian discipleship is that we follow Jesus. We can claim to be Christians, to be Christ’s disciples, to be baptized Catholics, if we do not follow His teachings and commandments, we are Christians only in name. Genuine love is demonstrated in deeds. Jesus loves His Father and He said in prayer: “Not my will but your will be done.” And Jesus sacrificed His life on the cross for the love of His Father, for our sake, and for our salvation.
There is no question about Jesus’ love for us. He demonstrated His love for us on the cross. Indeed, the Good Shepherd cares for us and does everything for the love of us. The question is if we also love Jesus. If we really love Him, then we must show it through our lifestyle and our deeds. Let us ask the help and intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mother. Mary loves God and she said: “Let it be done to me according to your word.” She sacrificed her plan to fulfill God’s plan for her life. She loves each of us and listens to our prayers. May we always pray to her that she may lead us to Jesus.
FOURTH SUNDAY OF EASTER
(White) Cycle C/Year II (May 8, 2022)
Acts 13:14, 43-52/Rv 7:9, 14-17/Jn 10:27-30